North Carolina Early Voting Begins Thursday

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North Carolina Early Voting Begins Thursday
The most closely watched race in the state is for North Carolina's open Senate seat.

If early data is any indication, you can say Americans are ready to vote in the midterm elections.

In Ohio, where early voting began last week, voter turnout is up nearly 3% compared to the gubernatorial race in 2018.

Georgia is also seeing record numbers, already surpassing the 2018 midterm election and turnout ahead of the 2020 presidential election.

Now, all eyes point to North Carolina as early voting kicked off Thursday. 

Recent surveys indicate the economy and inflation are top of mind for North Carolina voters, and that's exactly what Newsy is hearing from people at the polls on this first day of early voting.

The most closely watched race in the state is for North Carolina's open Senate seat.

Cheri Beasley is running on the Democrat ticket against Republican Representative Tedd Budd.

The two went head-to-head earlier this month on the debate stage.

Budd recently co-sponsored a bill to ban abortions after 15 weeks. But says he is for protecting the life of the pregnant person. 

While Beasley said she supports the framework of Roe v. Wade, she hopes abortion is an issue that gets Democrats to the polls.

And when it comes to the economy and inflation, Beasley said she thinks Congress can do more to help the American people.

While Budd took aim at Democrats, blaming them for pain at the pump and grocery stores, an issue rallying Republican voters like Mary Keener.

“The economy, honey. It’s pitiful. We’re old and retired, but what about these young people?” said Keener.

A poll of likely voters released this week from East Carolina University found Budd up 50% to 44%, with about 5% of voters still undecided.

North Carolina is a state that Republicans have won for 14 years and while the state's Senate race is close, most strategists predict it'll tip red this time around too.